Sourced from LaCroix International by Tracy Cabrera
File photo shows Pope Francis leading a ceremony to elevate 13 Roman Catholic prelates to the rank of cardinal in Saint Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican. With the installation of more cardinals, the pope has set the future direction of the Catholic Church. (Photo courtesy by Reuters)
VATICAN CITY, ROME — Recent developments have caused Pope Francis to review the Catholic Church as a religious organization propagating God’s Word to the Faithful and in doing so, he is in need of ‘a few good men’ or maybe ‘some women’ to achieve his goals of revival.
The 84-year-old pope is about to unveil the final plan for revamping the Roman Curia, but he’ll need to appoint top-notch people in order that reforms are to be successfully implemented.
Several major Vatican offices will be getting new prefects or presidents—or whatever the new apostolic constitution calls them. Chief among them is the Congregation for Bishops, currently held by the ever-friendly but doctrinally conservative Cardinal Marc Ouellet. The French Canadian cardinal will be 77 in June this year.
Close to Benedict XVI, Ouellet has been in the post since June 2010. There have been rumors that the pope is considering Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago for the job. But he’ll already be 72 next month, which would give him eight years maximum in that office.
Maybe that won’t even be necessary if the new constitution makes it a hard and fast rule that officials serve only a five-year term, perhaps once renewable.
Francis will also have to select a new prefect at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) to replace his Jesuit confrere, Cardinal Luis Ladaria, who will be 77 next April. The Spanish cardinal was first the doctrinal office’s secretary (2008) before becoming its prefect in 2017.
Pope Francis recently accepted the resignation of Cardinal Robert Sarah as prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments. There should have been nothing particularly controversial about this. The cardinal had already turned 75 last June, the age when all bishops are expected to submit their resignation to the pope.
It’s true that Francis has allowed several cardinals who are approaching 80 years of age to keep their Roman Curia posts up till now. But that is, after all, his prerogative.
The real news concerning Cardinal Sarah—besides the fact that no one was immediately named to replace him—was actually made in 2014 when the pope appointed the ultra-conservative Guinean to head Divine Worship in the first place. But that’s another story, which was already explained at the tail end of an article published some years ago.
The same day Cardinal Sarah went into retirement, the pope also cashiered another cardinal—77-year-old Angelo Comastri, who had been Archpriest of Saint Peter’s Basilica and head of its physical plant since February 2005, just a few months before John Paul II died. (Actually, the Italian was coadjutor-archpriest until several months later when Benedict XVI had since become pope.)
Francis named Cardinal Mauro Gambetti, a 55-year-old Conventual Franciscan, as Comastri’s successor. The friar, who just got his red hat last November in Covid Consistory I (yes, the pope’s likely to create even more cardinals before the pandemic is over), have been without a job for a number of months. (AI/MTVN)